Product Inspection

5 Main Types of Inspections in Quality Control

types of inspection in quality control

While purchasing products from an overseas manufacturer is a valuable asset when you expand your business overseas, without quality control inspections, you’ll always be left wondering whether the products you purchased meet your standards.

That’s where quality control inspection companies like Jonble come in. You might not be able to fly overseas to oversee production, however, quality control inspectors can be your eyes and ears. Not only that, but many quality inspectors often specialize in certain types of inspections that can benefit your business in different ways.

We know you might be wondering what quality control inspections you need to undertake when you’re sourcing products from overseas, and we’re here to help. So, let’s take a look at the five main types of inspections in quality control, how they’re performed, and when you should consider using them.

1. Pre-Production Inspection (PPI)

The very first inspection that takes place following a purchase order is known as a pre-production inspection. During a PPI inspection, the quality control inspector will visit the site of your supplier to evaluate the quality of raw materials, components, and other preparations they are making for the manufacturing process.

A typical PPI inspection checklist includes, but is not limited to:

  • Verifying the raw materials and their condition
  • Inspecting planned storage for your products
  • Inspecting a supplier’s production readiness and quality plan
  • Inspecting the function, size, and measurement of raw materials and other components
  • Making the required reliability and safety tests

One of the main reasons why retailers use PPI inspections is to ensure that the supplier they’re purchasing from is using the raw materials and components outlined in the contract. It’s an unfortunate truth that many unreliable suppliers may try to use cheaper raw materials and components to save themselves money. However, if these raw materials don’t work with your product, then it’s you that has to deal with customer returns, complaints, and potential safety hazards.

2. First Article Inspection (FAI)

Once production has started at a supplier’s site, then a first article inspection can be conducted. With an FAI inspection, your quality control inspector will inspect the first mass production run of your product from both the factory floor and the design documents.

A typical FAI inspection checklist includes, but is not limited to:

  • Verifying the product matches the design documents
  • Verifying the supplier follows the requested process and material specifications
  • Making technical notes about the nature of manufactured products

Most purchase contracts require that the retailer carries out an FAI inspection, which is why they’re one of the most common forms of quality control inspections. FAI inspections are also required following any engineering, materials, parts, manufacturing, or tooling changes to ensure that there have been no negative effects on your products.

3. During Production Inspection (DPI)

A during production inspection takes place once 20-50% of your product run has been completed and packed. During a DPI inspection, a quality control inspector will inspect the completed product to ensure that all processes are being followed to the agreed standard. They’ll also look to identify any product deviations or issues early in the manufacturing process.

A typical DPI inspection checklist includes, but is not limited to:

  • Verifying the production and quality plan
  • Inspecting storage conditions
  • Inspecting packaging, labeling, and barcodes
  • Conducting reliability and safety tests
  • Inspecting semi-finished products

DPI inspections are useful as a quality assurance measure as it ensures that the quality of the products in production is the same as the one you received as a sample. It also gives you chance to make any necessary adjustments and corrections before the production run has ended, which can save you valuable time and money. If defects have been identified, knowing the percentage of finished products with defects also ensures that you have time to plan for them before they are shipped to you.

4. Pre-Shipment Inspection (PSI)

Also known as a final random inspection, a PSI inspection makes sure that the supplier has manufactured your products to your specifications and packed them as required by your purchase contract. This will be conducted based on a random sample of products taken from the shipment, and as such, it’ll only be performed once the manufacturing run is complete and at least 80% of the order has been packed.

A typical PSI inspection checklist includes, but is not limited to:

  • Verifying the safety and function of manufactured products
  • Verifying the quality of products and organizing any price adjustments
  • Verifying the order has been produced to the standards set out in the purchase contract
  • Inspecting the product packing, labeling, and shipping marks

The biggest strength of organizing a PSI inspection is that because products are taken as a random sample from the order, you get an accurate view of the order without needing to inspect every product. Also, safety and functionality tests conducted as part of a PSI inspection will help to identify faulty products, which you can then refuse to pay for.

5. Container Loading Inspection (CLI)

The final quality control inspection type is a container loading inspection. Unlike the other inspections, this takes place at a supplier or forwarder’s warehouse. During a CLI inspection, your quality control inspector will supervise the loading of shipping containers to ensure that your order has been packed correctly.

A typical CLI inspection checklist includes, but is not limited to:

  • Verifying the correct goods have been loaded in the correct quantities
  • Checking packaging for physical and environmental damage
  • Performing a random spot check of products
  • Recording loading conditions, seal numbers, and departure times
  • Supervising the loading process to minimize damage and breakages

A CLI inspection is your final chance to verify the quality of the products that you’ve ordered and reduce the risk of damage during transit, which can save you time and money when your order arrives. It also gives you the chance to stop any damaged products that were missed in earlier inspections from being shipped and sold, helping to save your brand image and reputation.

Quality Control Inspections from Jonble

At Jonble, we offer all five of these quality control inspection types in China, as well as random product sampling services and factory audits. With decades of collective experience, you can be sure your products are in safe hands with us.

If you’re looking for quality control inspections in China, Jonble’s expert quality inspectors will be your eyes and ears during the manufacturing process. Not only do they perform quality control inspections to the highest industry standards, but they’ll also liaise with suppliers on your behalf if they identify a problem during your inspection.

Whether you need a single inspection or want a quality control inspector to be your eyes and ears throughout the manufacturing process, our range of quality inspection services are here to save you time and money.

If you’re looking to set up a product order with a Chinese supplier and want to ensure that you’re getting the best possible quality products, then contact our team today to learn more about what we can do for you.